On our 40th anniversary we are most grateful to those who have made our last four decades possible. - Danelle Dann
Greetings and Welcome:
We have absented ourselves from this space for months: this because we experienced two, albeit unrelated, serious stumbling blocks: the catastrophic death of Maximilian was not just a stumbling block. Our personal loss is beyond words, and professionally we must rethink our presence on both sides of the Atlantic.
At the risk of being repetitive (as I do write an update weekly), Max and I met in the late '70s in München, Deutschland, where we were both students, young and seemingly invincible. Dr. van der Huigg was one of our professors.
In very brief terms, following the market events of 2008, Max and Professor van der Huigg accepted my long standing invitation they join Interlangue. Thus we expanded the scope of our assignments in banking, targeting in addition to our established clientele, Research Institutes, fondly known as Denkfabriken.
Max's death left us devastated, and disoriented.
As for Interlangue, those who knew Max will probably agree that he was sui generis, and as such irreplaceable. He will always be in our hearts, we say, realising just how short of words we are in contemplating the immensity of the silence he left behind.
Secondly, we had to reach a decision as to how best comply with our clients' strong preference for compendious privacy. Apart from appointments for Research Institutes both in the U.S. and the E.U., we now number both governmental and non-governmental organizations amongst our clients.
Without exception, our clientele are in accord with one another when it comes to guarding the privacy of their proprietary data, which by definition, we have access to for the duration of an assignment.
This is not a new trend; given the sensitive information we have been working with all along, the criteria for publishing have steadily grown more stringent over the years, and as a result, our cyber footprint has been ever-diminishing. In fact, much like Professor van der Huigg, some of our clients do not maintain any cyber presence whatsoever. Thus, in the future we shall refrain entirely from publishing all but tangential data about our assignments.
The nature of our work is incompatible with so large and porous a platform as the internet. Of relevance as well is the fact that our genre of consulting lends itself best to private meetings.
We do use the Internet, however, mainly for innocuous correspondence.
For us these last eight months have been rather productive. For me, the toll of being in two places at once - New York and Geneva - on a regular basis is challenging. To this, an additional destination was added, namely my parents' retirement country house in the North Western U.S. - one more locus to visit.
With a view to reaching a decision respecting our market, we shall not accept new assignments for the last financial quarter of this year.
Some of our activities, while engendering good professional ties, require quite a bit of time for logistics.
We have, for instance, organised seminars where Ph.D students, along with people from an array of industries, were offered a chance to have direct and personal dialogue. For some students this turned out to be an a priori opportunity to meet those who may later have become their employers.
We will go on, as I have assured all those who inquired whether I would remain in my position, or retire. After four decades of non-stop activity, I have as good a chance of leaving Interlangue behind, as does 'Interlangue' , were 'IT' ever endeavour to separate its identity from mine.
Alongside our clients we have faced crisis after crisis during these four decades, crises that may have been rooted in market conditions, or more speciously, in political discourse - something new in our line of work.
And, in closing, I am pleased to say I am scheduled to remain New York until January 2,
2020, and therefore would very much like to revisit some of my original clients, current clients and friends. The last eleven years have been spent, seemingly, in business meetings, airport lounges, lengthy flights, and so on. This because we have always preferred personal meetings with our clients, as opposed to cyber - conversing.
As ever, I am deeply grateful for the extraordinary thoughtfulness of all, who sent flowers, letters or telephoned us.
A very bit of silver lining may be glimpsed at the end of Max's life: as a great gesture, the continuation of Max' s philanthropic activities on behalf of The Metropolitan Museum of Art -- are now underwritten by two of our clients.
Most especially, thank you for making our last forty years possible.
With deepest gratitude,
90 Park Avenue
New York, N.Y. 10016